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As technology advances, virtual offices are becoming increasingly popular, especially with lean startups who operate flexibly. Many business owners simply don’t need a permanent space anymore, and with more companies embracing working from home and flexible hours, neither do their employees.
Virtual offices are significantly cheaper than traditional offices; as well as a fixed business address and mail receipt, you only pay for the additional services you need, when you need them. Conference room access, hot desking and virtual receptionist support are paid for on an as-needed basis, providing businesses with the utmost flexibility.
However, because every virtual office plan is bespoke, it can be difficult to work out how much a virtual office costs. To make it more transparent, we’re outlining the typical virtual office prices of a basic plan in a few of our top US cities.
How Much Does a Virtual Office Cost?
Virtual Office Prices for Basic Plans
A basic virtual office plan typically includes a business address, mail receipt with local pickup or the option of mail forwarding for a small additional fee.
You’ll usually have to pay an initial set up fee of around $100-150, after which you’ll pay a standard fixed monthly fee (unless you decide to use additional services).
You can expect to pay in the region of $50 to $100 per month for a basic virtual office plan. The exact price will depend on a number of factors, including how prestigious or reputable the area is as a business location.
Related: Virtual Office NYC | Get the Best Prices on New York Virtual Offices
The cost of a virtual office can also depend on how competitive the virtual office market is in the area in which it’s based. For example, a virtual office in New York is relatively cheap compared with other big cities because there are so many options to choose from.
Additional Virtual Office Services
There’s a lot more to a virtual office than a business address. You might decide to pay a bit extra and opt for a more comprehensive plan that includes add ons such as a business telephone number, receptionist support, conference rooms for rent or the part-time use of a private office or hot desk.
The cost of these additional services varies depending on how often you intend to use them. For instance, a virtual office plan with a phone number, 50 ‘Live Answering’ minutes managed by a virtual receptionist and access to an online control panel — on top of the services included in the basic plan — might cost in the region of an extra $150 per month.
The main thing to remember is that virtual offices are specifically designed to facilitate flexibility. This means you can add and subtract services at short notice. If you’re a startup, for example, you might opt for a basic plan initially and then scale up when you find yourself in need of a conference room or someone to answer calls when you’re busy.
Why use a virtual office?
Credibility based benefits
Many virtual office advantages are linked to the concept of credibility. Even if you operate your business online from your own home, having a physical business address that is separate from your residential one will make you appear more professional and help to build trust with potential customers.
Put it this way: are you more likely to trust a business based in an obscure residential district of a city location with a reputation for business excellence?
Benefits of A Virtual Office for Small Business
A virtual office address helps you to establish a great first impression and the services available enable you to build a good reputation. Having meeting room usage as part of your plan will provide you with a professional place in which to meet clients and other stakeholders.
This beats having to rely on public spaces and busy coffee shops!
Conferencing technology is available to use in many of these conference spaces, enabling you to give presentations and connect with people remotely.
A virtual office will also make you appear more credible in the eyes of credit agencies, for example. Establishing business credit is a crucial step for most startups, and it’s much easier if you have a separate business address.
Having a business address at a commercial virtual office location will enable you to register with business directories. Business credit agencies source information from these directories when assessing your application for credit, making it easier for you to be accepted.
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Virtual Offices Benefit Your Bank Balance Too
Virtual offices benefit bank balances too. As mentioned previously, they are inexpensive compared with traditional ones because you only pay for the services and facilities you need. This enables you to channel the money you would otherwise have spent on an office into other areas of the business.
Another benefit links to both credibility and revenue.
Virtual offices are well suited to small businesses who want to utilize a Virtual Receptionist. A Virtual Receptionist is trained to answer phone calls and capture leads on your business’ behalf in a professional, sensitive and ‘on brand’ manner.
Many startups and small businesses simply don’t have the personnel to deal with everything involved in running a business as effectively as they’d perhaps like to. In using a Virtual Receptionist, you’re helping to ensure that no enquiry — or potential customer — goes unanswered, making it easier to win new business and increase ROI.
Again, the nature of a virtual office is such that you can decide how many hours of Virtual Receptionist support you need from month to month as your business’ needs fluctuate.
Similarly, adding hot desk hours to your virtual plan can encourage productivity which in turn could have a positive effect on revenue. Many people feel comfortable working from home, but some find that a change of scene every now and again can be helpful for motivation.
“I work remotely most of the time but go into the office when I need a change of scene or to focus on a deadline. Sometimes I’ll coincide coworking with a client meeting to make the most of the WiFi, desk space and coffee!”
Office space is typically the second biggest cost for businesses, but it doesn’t have to be that way.
The relatively low cost of a virtual office is well worth it when you consider the potential monetary (and credibility) gains you’ll receive. Whether you opt for a basic plan or decide to invest in all the additional perks, this flexible office solution is designed to fit seamlessly with your businesses evolving needs and requirements.